I have been an avid fan of John Bellairs for a number of years and when he died a few years ago, I was relieved and pleased when Brad Stickland took up where Bellairs had left off. However, the Wrath of the Grinning Ghost...while entertaining, never quite captures the level of suspense and spookiness that Bellairs always managed and that Strickland himself has accomplished up to this point. Some of the characters are never really developed...the fortune teller is an example...and the main characters that we have all come to know and love, just seem like half hearted shadows of their former selves. While not Strickland's best, it's still worth reading. But, if this is your first taste of Bellairs, you may be better off trying some of his pre-Strickland offerings. Any one of them would be worth your time.